I never used to have an issue with acne. In my adolescence, I was fresh-faced, with glowing soft skin. Sometime in my early twenties that changed. It started slowly, with a pimple popping up here and there. It quickly grew into a larger problem, adult acne. Pimples appeared in growing numbers, with redness filling the spaces in between.

My unexpected acne caused some self-esteem issues. I no longer wanted my picture taken and I was consumed with finding a cure for my acne. Unfortunately, I couldn’t afford the medications I saw in commercials. Nor, did I have the time or funds to see a dermatologist. I was afraid there wouldn’t be a solution and that I’d be plagued with pimples until I was 50 years old.

Lucky for me, there’s this thing called the Internet and it helped me discover some of the best home remedies for acne. The following are variations of the at-home remedies that work best for me. Of course, a dermatologist is your best defense against acne breakouts, but trying some of these home remedies for acne can help clear your skin and get you fresh faced again.

These remedies work well for me, so chances are they’ll work for you too. I’m no longer afraid to smile in photographs or go out with friends. Lots of these remedies work quickly, so apply them as soon as a breakout or pimple surfaces. In between applying remedies, I make sure to gently wash my face twice a day.

Honey & Cinnamon

This remedy is one of my favorites, because it smells and feels wonderful. I blend three heaping spoonfuls of honey mixed with a level spoonful of cinnamon. Honey is a sticky substance, so I recommend mixing and applying this remedy with a tongue depressor or the back of a spoon. The mixture makes a paste. Pull back your hair and then apply the paste to all infected areas. Leave the mask on for about an hour, before using warm water to remove it.

Why it works:

Both honey and cinnamon have anti-microbial properties. Honey, especially, works to inhibit the growth of acne causing bacteria. Cinnamon also contains a number of essential oils and anti-inflammatory properties, so it does a great job of clearing up the redness and swelling I attribute to my acne. Because acne is often an overgrowth of bacteria, it’s clear why a mixture of honey and cinnamon helps cure a breakout.

cinnamon and honey

Tomato Pulp and Cucumber Juice

Chances are high you’ve heard that tomato pulp can help clear up an acne breakout, but have you also heard that mixing tomato pulp and cucumber juice results in a very effective acne remedy? I always use half a fresh tomato and mash it into a paste, using a fork, before adding a few squirts of cucumber juice. It’s okay to use store-bought cucumber juice or you can squeeze a cucumber yourself. Fresh tomatoes are able to absorb your excess oils much better than non-fresh ones, so make sure to avoid any tomatoes that are canned or otherwise not fresh. Apply the mixture to your affected areas and leave it on for a few minutes. Use warm water to rinse off the mixture. Do this twice a day for the best results.

Why it works:

Imagine the tomatoes are a cleanser and the cucumber is a toner. These two things are essential in any skincare regiment, so it’s no wonder they work well to clear up acne. Cucumber works to soothe skin, while improving skin texture and quality. Because tomatoes are rich in vitamin A, they help to improve skin healing time. Linda Tarr Kent, a health and fitness writer for Livestrong.com, writes that tomatoes also help to improve acne scars.

tomato pulp and cucumber


Once in a while, I wear toothpaste to bed to treat my acne. There aren’t many home remedies for acne overnight, but toothpaste seems to get the job done. I place a small dot of white organic toothpaste on my zit and then I hit the hay. In the morning, the zit is significantly smaller and a lot less painful. In my experience, it can take two or three nights for the toothpaste to completely remove the pimple.

Why it works:

The toothpaste dries the skin, while extracting impurities. Keep in mind – sometimes toothpaste works too hard and can cause excessive drying. Discontinue this method if you notice a worsening in redness or a painful irritation. Organic toothpaste is the best option for overnight pimple control, because it doesn’t feature any of the harsh chemicals regular toothpaste does.

See Salt Scrub

A lot of people ask me about home remedies for back acne. I have mild body acne, including my back. I manage it by regularly exfoliating with a sea salt scrub I make myself. I crush ten uncoated aspirin and mix them with a 1/3 cup of sea salt, a 1/3 cup olive oil and around a tablespoon of raw oats. It’s important to apply this scrub to damp skin, so use it in the shower.

Why it works:

When your body acne is mild, regular exfoliation cleanses the skin and works to remove the acne. Sea salt is gentle on the skin, but works to remove dead skin cells and toxins. The result is truly clean skin, which prevents breakouts. If you’re suffering from moderate to severe body acne, this method may irritate the skin and isn’t recommended.

see salt scrub

These Remedies are Safe and Effective

Now Use a Proper Moisturizer

These 5 natural remedies for acne work better than you might think, and they are safer and gentler than many over-the-counter chemical acne treatments. After you've used an acne treatment it's important to use a moisturizer that is specifically formulated for acne prone skin. The best moisturizers for acne are oil free (water-based), non comedogenic, and contain acne fighting ingredients. Look for ingredients like retinol, salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide on the label.